Sweet-and-savory bacon-wrapped tofu is a flavorful appetizer and a festive party finger food! It's also incredibly fun and easy to make.
With holiday party time coming up, I wanted to create a decadent, finger food recipe that's also easy to make. This bacon-wrapped tofu fit the bill. Each piece is marinated in a sweet-spicy ginger-maple sauce, wrapped in smoky strips of seitan bacon, and then baked to perfection.
Preparing the tofu
Pressing the tofu for these bacon-wrapped tofu bites is critical, because the more water you get out, the more of the flavorful marinade your little tofu cubes will drink in.
And who doesn't want to reach critical ginger-maple-sesame mass?
To get the most water out and preserve the shape of the block, I press my tofu with the EZ Tofu Press.
The EZ Tofu Press is faster than pressing with weights in a colander, because you adjust the pressure manually, rather than relying on gravity. It also maintains the shape of the block, which is so important in a tofu bites recipe like this one.
The EZ Tofu Press gets out about ½ cup of water in just 10-15 minutes of pressing. And it's incredibly easy to clean. You can hand wash or just stick it into the top rack of your dishwasher.
Once your tofu is pressed, dice it into one-inch cubes, and you are ready to marinate!
To make bacon-wrapped tofu bites, you want to marinate the tofu for as long as possible. One hour is the bare minimum, but if you can marinate overnight, all the better! The longer you marinate, the more flavorful your tofu will be.
You know I love to reduce the amount of dishes you have to wash, so for this recipe, you marinate the tofu in the same pan that you use for round one of baking.
While the tofu bakes in the sauce, grab your package of seitan bacon, and slice each piece in half, lengthwise, so you have two skinnier strips of bacon.
You definitely want to choose bacon that's pliable, because we are rolling it around those little tofu bites. Tempeh bacon doesn't work in this recipe, because it will break if you bend it that much.
After the tofu bakes, let it get cool enough to handle, then wrap each tofu cube in a strip of the bacon that you just sliced. Use a wooden toothpick to hold it closed. Please don't use plastic, because a plastic toothpick can melt during the second round of baking.
Arrange those wrapped tofu pieces on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Now, brush the bacon-wrapped tofu with the remaining marinade from the pan, and bake again.
How to serve and store
You can serve these hot and fresh from the oven, but they are also delicious at room temperature or even cold from the fridge for a late-night, post-party snack!
If you do want to warm these up, bake them at 300° F for 10 minutes to heat them through. You can also just pop them into the microwave for 30 seconds to a minute to warm them up.
While the toothpick does hold these together well, I wouldn't just throw them into a container to store them. Instead, arrange them in an airtight container. You don't have to do a single layer, just don't dump the whole tray in, is what I'm saying.
They will keep for three to five days in the fridge, though I dare you to not eat them all long before then!
More tofu recipes
For the marinade
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
For the bacon-wrapped tofu
- 1 block extra firm tofu - pressed and cut into 1" cubes (I ended up with 32 cubes.)
- 16 slices vegan bacon - see note
- Whisk the marinade ingredients together.
- Arrange the tofu in an 8×8" glass baking pan, and pour the marinade over it. Gently toss to coat all sides. Marinate for at least an hour, up to overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 400° F, and pull the pan out of the refrigerator (if you marinated overnight). Make sure the pan is room temperature before you pop it into the oven in the next step. No exploding pans, please!
- Stir the tofu one more time, then stick the pan in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 350° F.
- Set the tofu aside to cool, and slice your pieces of bacon in half, lengthwise, so each piece of bacon turns into two skinnier pieces of bacon.
- When the tofu is cool enough to handle, wrap each cube in one of those half slices of vegan bacon and secure each one with a wooden (not plastic!) toothpick. Brush the bacon and any exposed tofu with the leftover marinade from the baking pan.
- Arrange your bacon-wrapped tofu on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20 minutes, then arrange on a tray to serve.